SEO for Lawyers

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SEO for Lawyers - The Ultimate Search Engine Optimization Solution

Expert lawyer marketing. Lead generation. ROI focused. Multi-faceted marketing approach. Get a full niche analysis report and see if SEO is the right marketing option for you!

33% of people in America rely on the internet to search for a local business every day. 96% of that traffic is from Google. SEO is common sense for most businesses. You can either pay for ads and pay for every single lead you get for eternity, or you can invest in SEO and pay a much smaller amount based on the ratio of leads delivered. Some law firms function better with PPC, but its always something you should explore as a potential avenue for revenue and lead gen.

Think about the last time you were searching for a good or service: How did you find what you were looking for? If we want information, we hit up Google. Though most of us are internet users, few of us stop to think about how search engines index or organize the content on the internet so that it is so conveniently present every time we hit the return key.

Things to Keep In Mind

What to Consider When Shopping for SEO for Lawyers

When someone searches for “lawyers in my city,” which companies appear on the first page of the search engine results page (SERP)? What do you need to do so that your law firm appears there and so that users click on your website’s title tag? SEO improves your organic search engine rankings, which makes it more likely that potential customers will land on your page and ultimately convert into your client. Working on SEO for lawyers means a few different things:

Because SEO is a long-term marketing strategy, you will enjoy the most success if you commit to a long-term, dynamic internet marketing strategy

Whether you undertake an SEO campaign yourself or enlist the help of a professional SEO firm for lawyers, this guide is meant to provide you with the information you need to consider regarding SEO marketing for attorneys.

SEO Ranking Factors for Law Firms

The idea that SEO (search engine optimization) involves merely incorporating strategic keywords is a myth. Although including relevant keywords into your website content communicates the intent of your webpage to a search engine, SEO involves a number of components:
  • Website Optimizations – Your site must be marked up with header, content, URL, image, title tag, and meta attributions, which indicate to Google the appropriate manner in which to index your content. Much like a librarian sorting a full stack by call numbers, Google uses your site’s attribution designations to file your site in the appropriate location, so users can find it easily. Hint: If your “book” isn’t sorted properly in the stacks, users will never find it—even if the card catalogue insists that it’s present.
  • Navigability – Have you ever visited a website where it was impossible to find your way around? The last thing you want is for a user to land on your site and not be able to find the information you need. Just like a firm handshake or trustworthy eye contact is imperative in an initial consultation, first impressions matter online, too. How is a potential client supposed to trust you with sensitive matters if you haven’t provided them with a hospitable first impression online? The amount of time potential clients spend on your site, on each page, and how many times a user clicks on your site just to push the “back” button right away—called a bounce all affect your SEO.
  • Content – Regularly updated, relevant, informative content draws users into your site. A big, simple list of keywords will not fool any search engine in 2020. Useful, authentic content—that happens to incorporate relevant keywords—on your website and blog is the only type of content worth producing.
  • Backlinks – Search engines process information by crawling through websites and reading them very quickly. While crawling through a site, the search engines will move from one page to the next through links. When another website includes a link to your company’s page, it sends the search engine to you, improving your ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs). The value of links is another reason that it’s important to link internally—from one page of your website to another.

Break it Down

What Are The Different Types Of SEO?

At Syndiket, we believe four types of SEO exist – and we have an acronym to represent those 4 types of SEO. The acronym is T.R.A.P. 

“T” stands for Technical, “R” stands for Relevancy, “A” stands for Authority, and “P” stands for popularity. Search engine optimization has many smaller divisions within the 4 types, but all of them can be placed into one of these 4 buckets.

Generally, technical SEO for local businesses carry the least importance for ranking. Technical SEO has a bare minimum that is required and this usually includes things like site speed, indexation issues, crawlability, and schema. Once the core technical parts are done, minimal upkeep is required.

Relevancy is one of trivium elements of SEO. It has equal importance with popularity signals and authority signals. Relevancy signals are based on algorithmic learning principles. Bots crawl the internet every time a searcher has a search. Each search is given a relevancy score and the URLs that pop up for a query. The higher the relevancy score you attain, the greater your aggregated rating becomes in Google’s eyes. Digital marketing is a strange thing in 2020, and ranking a website requires the website to be relevant on many fronts.

Google’s Co-creator, Larry Page, had a unique idea in 1998 which has led to the modern-day Google Empire. “Page Rank”, named after Larry Page himself, was the algorithm that established Google as a search engine giant. The algorithm ranked websites by authority. 

Every page of a website has authority and the sum of all pages has another authority metric. The authority metric is largely determined by how many people link to them (backlinks). The aggregate score of all pages pointing to a domain creates the domain score, which is what Syndiket calls “Domain Rating”, per Ahrefs metrics. The more a site is referenced, the more authority it has. But, the real improvement to the algorithm came when Google began to classify authority weight. 

If Tony Hawk endorsed Syndiket for skateboarding, it would carry a lot more authority than 5 random high school kids endorsing Syndiket. This differentiation in authority happened in 2012 with the Penguin update. Authority SEO is complicated but VERY important.

Popularity signals are especially strong for GMB or local SEO, but popularity and engagement are used for all rankings. The goal of this signal is for Google to verify its own algorithm. You can check off all the boxes, but if your content is something real people hate, Google has ways to measure that. Syndiket has proprietary methods of controlling CTR (click-through rate) but we also infuse CRO methods into our work to make sure people actually like the content. Social shares and likes are also included in this bucket.

On-site SEO for Law Firms

Optimizing the elements of your website with a detailed strategy ensures that high-ranking, relevant traffic gravitates to your website. On-site SEO is an easy way for users to find your page useful and for search engines to find your page worth ranking. Law firm SEO on your website means creating custom content, making your site easy to navigate, and selecting the right keywords and incorporating them into your web pages naturally. On-site SEO requires expertise in a variety of areas:

  • Keyword Selection – A list of relevant keywords based on what people have already searched for using search engines and what your competitors are already using. The intuitive way to select keywords is to search for your top search query (Google Analytics can help you determine what words people search for to find your website) and check out the keywords your competitors are ranking for. What search queries are they targeting on their ranking articles? If you want a more in-depth analysis of keywords for your website, you can use a tool like Google Keyword Planner or even a Google Chrome extension like Keywords Everywhere.

  • Website Structure Optimization – Optimizing your structure will ensure you are providing relevant information for your visitors based on each page. A bunch of irrelevant content will not optimize your website.

  • Headings (H1, H2, H3, H4, and so on) – Headings are read by search engines and can be used on your site for general organizational purposes. The style and type of your headings can also make a difference.

  • Title Tags – These explain the content on the webpage and help users direct themselves to your site. To use an analog example, you can think about title tags as the file names on filing folders. Title tags must be crafted with keywords that describe the information on the page.

  • Meta-Description – This describes the website/page on the Google search engine results page (SERP). Because meta-descriptions must be under 160 characters, concision is key. This small amount of real estate can make or break whether users click on your page.

  • Custom Content – Custom content should offer something useful to your audience, whether it is an answer to a question or a solution to a problem they have. Custom content should be easy to read, filled with engaging visuals, and be in the long-form word count range. Marketing your business through custom content is a cutting edge search engine marketing method that can have a huge impact on your law firm SEO.

  • Google Analytics – This tool tracks different aspects of your site, including traffic, click-through rates, keyword rankings, and more. This data will be imperative in tracking the improvements you make to your law firm SEO.

  • Google Search Console + your Sitemap – Adding your sitemap to the Google Search Console tells Google about your site’s content. It is important that you submit your sitemap to all the top search engines so that they can find pages on your site faster and can rank them accordingly.

  • On-site Security – Website security prevents attacks, compromised information, and viruses from wreaking havoc on your computer and on your visitors when they inquire about your law services. The last thing you want is for your website to harm the computer of a potential client.

  • On-Site Load Speed – The speed with which your website loads also affects your search engine ranking. The longer your page takes to load, the lower you will rank—because, as we know, nobody likes waiting.

  • Calls to Action – Make sure that your website includes buttons and other calls to action. Once you have drawn in a user, you must make it as easy as possible for them to continue their relationship with you.

Navigational structure and website architecture in Attorney SEO Campaign

The importance of great content

Although there are numerous law firm SEO focus areas, these elements mean little if you do not have great content. Just as using fine china will not improve the quality of bad food, innovative design will not save your website from bad content. Users visit websites for the content, so if the information displayed on your website is incorrect, uninteresting, or without purpose, your clients will quickly move on to a competitor’s page.

Maintaining an Active Blog

Blog posts is an essential part of keeping your site updated with current, relevant information that is important to your audience. Each time you make a post, it gives users another potential reason to visit your site. Sites generally have two overarching categories of content: static site pages and blog posts. Your site will have service pages with static pages that remains relevant (more or less) for an extended period of time.

For instance, if you are a DUI lawyer focused on working with clients who are facing DUI charges, your website will have some pages that detail DUI as one of your practice areas, testimonials, and other pertinent information. Targeted posts (blog posts) will contain information that pertains to specific issues relevant to your potential clients. Focused blog posts can highlight aspects of the type of law you focus in. For instance, what occurs when a minor has a DUI, the legal penalties someone might face after they are convicted of drunk driving, or the legal implications a DUI can have on careers and professional licenses.

Basically, your potential clients will land on your site and immediately have access to general DUI information—or whatever practice areas you focus on—as well as an active blog where the posts delve into situational aspects of the given practice area. Remember, with a strong law firm SEO strategy, all of the content on your website must be high-quality and relevant. Not only will your site be updated with new posts and information, but potential clients searching for information about a specific issue will find themselves on your page.

An active blog is a vital pillar of your website’s structure because it improves your SEO. By adding fresh, useful, and original content, your formerly one-time visitors will have a reason to return again and again. Blogs strengthen consumer relationships by creating a space for comments, which can be the building blocks of a conversation.

As you know, writing a blog is a continual process. You can’t make a few posts and be done with it. Actively blogging over time is the way to continually direct traffic to your blog.

As you plan to launch an active blog, there are a variety of decisions you will need to make to maximize your impact:

  • Who is your audience? Who do you want to attract to your site?
  • What is the message and brand of your blog? What do you want to say, and how do you want to say it?
  • What kinds of visuals will you include? You will reach more users with both written, visual, and audio-visual elements.
  • With what frequency will you post? Posting on a regular basis (for instance, every Sunday night, or every day) means that users will look forward to your posts.
  • Who will be writing your blog? Will you be writing the posts, or would it be a better use of your time to feature guest bloggers?
  • Will you hire an internet marketing firm to manage your blog? Companies that specialize in internet marketing may be able to implement best practices and techniques as they build your audience for your blog.

When it comes to creating content in your blogs, in addition to compelling, relevant content, you’re going to want to make sure to use internal links—linking to other posts and pages on your site—to fully optimize your site. Interlinking your pages sends a message to Google that there is plenty to crawl, and provides plenty of material for GoogleBot’s spiders to weave their web throughout your site.

Google’s index is then updated with the latest snapshots of your posts and pages to have handy when users come looking. The most effective internet marketing strategy is to integrate all of the tools available to you. By creating excellent content and installing a smooth and easy-to-use navigational structure, users will land on your website and stay there. Google bing and yahoo all rely on similar indexation strategies for law firm websites and will reward a good legal firm with website traffic.

Regarding SEO Content and lawyer advertising ethics

Your advertising campaign should promote your law firm by maximizing visibility and converting potential clients into loyal consumers. A respectable marketing strategy will entreat targeted viewers rather than spam them with useless content. Respective state bar associations have put into place specific regulations related to the rights of the public and advertisers when it comes to attorney marketing. Whether or not your state has these statutes, there are social and business considerations you should examine when advertising as a lawyer.

Advertisements should not ever be offensive, deceitful, or misleading. The disingenuous activity can earn your law firm a bad reputation and turn away future business as well as bring about legal implications. Unfortunately, even with regulations in place, there are lines that can feel blurred.

Unethical attorney advertising

As respected professionals, lawyers (attorneys) are held to higher advertising standards than other industries. An attorney’s office’s reputation can be sullied if they do not implement the necessary disclaimers or engage in prohibited language. Keeping the bar laws of your state in mind, as a lawyer, you should generally avoid the following:

Who should write my online content?

Your online content should be relevant, accurate, factual, and interesting. What are users looking for? What kind of information would be helpful for them to know? Hiring an SEO company that has experience working with lawyers provide direction in how to create online content that converts users into clients while remaining compliant with your state’s attorney web marketing guidelines. As a digital marketing company, Syndiket specializes in leading content teams.

Local vs national/global internet marketing strategy

When developing content for your site, it is important to make sure that you are targeting the correct audience by implementing proper geo modifiers in your technical optimizations. You must make sure your website is relevant to your geographical area so that it’s easier for potential clients to find you and share your content.

Local SEO marketing for attorneys speaks directly to the clients in your geographical area with targeted key phrases such as “Miami attorney near me” or “divorce lawyer near me.” By focusing on subjects and geographical places of interest within your state, you can hit home with your local audience.

National SEO marketing is a broader, global technique which uses phrases that are relevant to your field of work in general. For example, “medical malpractice,” “personal injury cases,” or “car accident lawyers” are phrases that point out a specific occurrence within the state or city throughout the world.

A local SEO campaign put attorneys in front of targeted, potential clients in their geographical area.

Off-site SEO for Attorneys

Off-site SEO is a list of improvements you can make that occur outside of your actual website. You can improve your SEO by using off-site factors that are trustworthy, reliable, and relevant. When reputable sources link to your profile (social media shares, links to your website, etc.), your SEO improves.

Off-site SEO consists of many factors including building trust by linking to relevant, high-authority sites. Off-site SEO is also improved through using a healthy number of links–including internal links–that are anchored with target keywords, the keywords that search engines have determined as most relevant or desirable.

Recommended Platforms for SEO for Attorney Social Media Campaigns

Facebook For Attorney SEO campaigns

Facebook reigns as the most popular search engine of all time. 62% of Facebook’s 1.23 billion active users log into Facebook daily. With billions of potential clients gathered in one online area, you cannot afford to miss this opportunity to share your business’ ideas.

At the very least, your business name and contact information must be listed on Facebook; however, you do have other opportunities to direct users to your site through social media.

Creating original content for your company’s Facebook page allows social media users to click on links that go to your page. Assessing the most successful Facebook pages of competitors can give you some ideas about what kind of content makes a big splash. When a company creates a piece of content that goes viral, hundreds, thousands, or even millions of users visit their page.

Youtube Videos To Maximize Your Social Media Impact

YouTube gets around 30 million plays per day, but it is a largely untapped source of traffic. YouTube is an incredible source for making videos and tutorials so that your viewers can get an inside look at your business.

There are many ways to improve your YouTube SEO:

  • Creating videos that have your audience in mind.
  • Creating videos that not only garner views but keep viewers watching for several minutes. Experiment with producing longer and shorter videos to see what gets you the best results.
  • Incorporating relevant keywords into your video files, titles, and descriptions.
  • Using user experience (UX) metrics to inform the kinds of videos you produce. UX metrics help you measure the number of comments, subscriptions, shares, rates, and views, all of which translate into SEO and growth in your business.

It may seem difficult, at first, to figure out what kinds of videos to produce. After checking out the kinds of successful videos your competitors are producing, you may be surprised at the variety of styles and content.

Successful YouTube channels exist for just about every industry. Business owners have found success through producing informational lectures, tutorials, interviews with industry experts, product reviews, testimonials, humorous videos (when appropriate), and many other approaches.

Instagram & SEO for Law Firms Campaign

Instagram is the choice social media platform of young people these days. Being able to connect with your potential clients using the digital sharing media they already know and love will ensure that when they need you—you will be the first thought that comes to mind.

Crafting a personable, relatable image of yourself and your law firm supported with information and links to a relevant resource will engrain in the minds of your potential, former, and current clients that you are invested in your work, and remain current on the latest events in your niche and geographical area.

LinkedIn and How it Helps SEO for Attorneys

LinkedIn, like the other social media platforms, is an excellent source for connecting and engaging with other people that share the same network you do—as well as the ability to expand it. LinkedIn offers a platform for sharing and posting—just as FB, Twitter, and IG—to a more professionally driven demographic.

Law Firm SEO Campaign Length

SEO is a continual strategy. Because SEO is based on fresh content, and because the algorithms are always changing, you need to continually update your page with new information. Perhaps a better question, is this: when will the effects of an SEO campaign begin to impact my business’s success? While there’s no definitive answer, as every business is different, here are a few key factors to consider:

  • Length of time your website has been up and running – It’s impossible to get a high SERP ranking right away. As you continue to publish updated content and add blog posts, search engines will begin to recognize that your site is worth sending users to.

  • Condition of your website – If you site can’t be navigated or you have a lot of broken links, search engines will avoid sending potential clients your way.

  • If SEO campaign has already been established – Have you already started on SEO? Great! Then we have a foundation, to begin with. If you are starting from scratch, getting results will take a bit longer.

  • The amount of content on your website – Fresh content will remind search engines that your page is worthwhile. Your site needs to be updated over time. In a way, you’re only as good as your last update. Building authority takes time and substance.

How Can I Track My SEO Return Over Time?

There are a number of tools available to track your website’s growth. Popular and effective SEO tools include Google Analytics and Google Webmaster. These tools are useful in a number of ways:

  • Phone Tracking – Call tracking is a useful tool to figure out which campaigns or keywords prompted visitors to call you. To do so, it’s important that you remain consistent regarding your NAP (name, address, and phone number).
  • Form Tracking – When a lead fills out a form, you can set up your site to both track where that form is being sent from, and to have the form sent to you immediately so you can continue the conversation.
  • Traffic Reports – Traffic reports track keywords that are trending. They also help you to know where traffic is coming from and what kind of traffic it is.
  • Ranking Reports – Ranking reports can help you manage which keywords your site uses and which of those keywords rank highest and lowest.

With the right combination of expertise, persistence, and strategies, your site will be making its way up the ranks in no time. Building up your SEO–whether by yourself or with the help of an internet marketing company–is an exciting development that can take the public presence of your law firm to the next level. Internet marketing is not simply creating a website and waiting to see what happens. Don’t miss out on taking advantage of the latest SEO strategies to market your business effectively.

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